Are You a Non-Executive Director?
The Role of a Non-Executive Director
Governance & Knowledge
Have you operated within the food and drink sector and understand the legal and regulatory environment of the sector? Do you have experience at Director level? A NED will understand what good looks like and contribute towards the effective operation of the Board of Directors.
‘Been there, done that!’ Can you demonstrate first-hand experience of directing or leading a business through successful scale up? NEDs have a proven track record of success within the scope of a specific role e.g. financial, operations, supply chain, sales or marketing. Can you empathise with the other directors and management team, and show that you too have experience and insight of the situations they are facing? Especially if the situation is fast paced and stressful.
NEDs are also very well networked and can call on known and trusted outside resources as and when appropriate.
Big Picture Thinker
NEDs will think strategically and understand the importance of the business’s vision and purpose, with sight of longer-term goals and objectives. Are you able to ask pertinent questions and understand key performance data, without having to dig into the detail?
Do you like challenging the status quo? NEDs will suggest or recommend alternative approaches with reasoned debate and assertiveness, which makes good communication skills at all levels essential, but particularly with fellow directors to constantly challenge the bigger picture direction and strategy of the business.
Energy & Commitment
NEDs need to be committed and objective about the success of the business, and able to drive through problems and setbacks that may arise along the way. Do you have the energy to motivate colleagues?
Whilst there are no specific qualifications that a NED should hold, it helps if you are up to date with your continuous professional development (CPD) or a member of a professional organisation. You should also be in touch with the latest trends and well connected with expertise in whichever is your chosen field.
Podcast: George Adams & John Taylerson
Are you a potential Non-Executive Director? Do you feel that you have the experience, skills, and knowledge to support a business on their scale up journey?
To find out what it takes to be a successful NED our Programme Manager, John Taylerson, visits George Adams to find out more about the role.
George has recently been appointed by the Development Bank of Wales as a Non-Executive Chairman of the high growth Welsh business, Just Love Food.
It is important to acknowledge that the legal duties, responsibilities and potential liabilities for NEDs are the same as for executive directors, even if you ‘act’ as a director, irrespective of whether or not you are officially appointed and registered as such with Companies House.
Breach of these duties or liabilities can result in a NED being held to account and disqualified under the Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986, in the same way as executive directors.
Make sure that you fully understand what is expected of you, and what you are liable for before committing.
For further reading on director’s responsibilities:
Companies Act 2006 - as a director, you must perform a set of 7 duties under the Companies Act 2006.
UK.gov – Being a company director
Understanding your role as a company director and your responsibilities to Companies House.
Do you feel that you could be the right fit to support a Welsh food or drink business as a Non-Executive Director?
Can you bring a fresh and impartial perspective to a business?
Are you able to help a business accelerate their growth by finding new customers, business partners, suppliers, team members, or investors?
Do you have experience outside your own business?
Can you help a business look at its performance and strategy to ensure it operates effectively?
Can you help source and secure investment?
If you have answered yes to one or more of these questions and would like to put yourself forward as a NED, complete the expression of interest form below, following which a member of the Sustainable Scale Up Cluster team will be in touch to discuss further.